The Universal Being In Whose Embrace We Live

Eventually, the crux of the change brought about by the spiritual consciousness is the release of the focus and concern for the outward forms and forces at work in the world, and a reorientation that moves the awareness to that of the Eternal which resides behind and above all the changes and modifications we see in outer things. The Shwetashwatara Upanishad has an extensive section devoted to the recognition that all that exists, all the forms we see, all the experiences we undergo, are the One Eternal Brahman. It then goes on to show the necessity for detachment to gain understanding of the Truth: “Two winged birds cling about a common tree, comrades, yoke-fellows; and one eats the sweet fruit of the tree, the other eats not, but watches. The Soul upon a common tree is absorbed and because he is not lord, grieves and is bewildered; but when he sees and cleaves to that other who is the Lord, he knows that all is His greatness and his sorrow passes away from him.”

Sri Aurobindo amplifies this: “The soul when it allows itself to be tyrannised over by the appearances of Nature, misses itself and goes whirling about in the cycle of the births and deaths of its bodies. There, passionately following without end the mutations of personality and its interests, it cannot draw back to the possession of its impersonal and unborn self-existence. To be able to do that is to find oneself and get back to one’s true being, that which assumes these births but does not perish with the perishing of its forms. To enjoy the eternity to which birth and life are only outward circumstances, is the soul’s true immortality and transcendence. That Eternal or that Eternity is the Brahman.”

The Brahman: “…a bodiless and million-bodied spirit whose hands of strength and feet of swiftness are on every side of us, whose heads and eyes and faces are those innumerable visages which we see wherever we turn, whose ear is everywhere listening to the silence of eternity and the music of the worlds, is the universal Being in whose embrace we live.”

Sri Aurobindo, Essays on the Gita, Second Series, Part II, Chapter 13, The Field and Its Knower, pp. 401-402

and Sri Aurobindo, The Upanishads, Shwetashwatara Upanishad, Chapter IV, verses 6-7, page 370

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